The video entitled “Reflections on Bhopal After Thirty Years” chronicles how on December 2, 1984, water inadvertently entered a storage tank containing more than 80,000 pounds of methyl isocyanate, or MIC, which reacts react violently with water. A subsequent runaway reaction overheated the tank and resulted in a massive toxic gas release. A dense, lethal cloud drifted over the city of Bhopal exposing hundreds of thousands of people to deadly MIC and other chemicals.
An estimated 3,800 people died immediately, and tens of thousands were injured. Eventually thousands more died from toxic gas-related illnesses – the release eventually killed tens of thousands of people.
In the wake of Bhopal, Congress enacted new laws to increase chemical emergency preparedness and to require companies to develop process safety and risk management programs, and to report their worst-case release scenarios. Congress also established the Chemical Safety Board to independently investigate chemical accidents and recommend measures to prevent such catastrophic accidents. But despite these actions in the 1990’s, the United States continues to experience serious chemical accidents.
In the video, CSB Chairperson Rafael Moure-Eraso says, “Process safety management regulations are in need of reform. There must be more emphasis on preventing the occurrence of major chemical accidents through safer design. Responding to emergencies and punishing people after the fact are not enough.
In the past few years, CSB investigations have found deficiencies in design and process safety management similar to those uncovered in Bhopal. The video points out that a 2008 explosion killing two workers and injuring eight others at a pesticide plant in Institute, West Virginia found that incomplete operator training and procedures similar to Union Carbide’s at Bhopal.
Furthermore, had the Institute plant vessel that exploded taken a different trajectory, pieces of it could have struck piping connected to a storage tank containing 13,700 pounds of MIC, potentially causing a large release of the same highly toxic chemical that killed thousands in Bhopal.
The safety message discusses a number of additional accidents currently investigated or previously investigated by the CSB which ultimately could have been prevented had current federal and state regulations focused on preventative measures or continuously reducing process risks.
To enhance safety in the chemical industry, the Board has voted to include “Modernize U.S. Process Safety Management Regulations” on the CSB’s list of most wanted safety improvements.
Chairperson Rafael Moure-Eraso concludes the video with the following call to industry and regulators, “Since Bhopal, both industry and government have increased their efforts to prevent major chemical accidents. But multiple CSB investigations show that much more needs to be done to assure that future tragedies will be avoided.”
The CSB is an independent federal agency charged with investigating serious chemical accidents. The agency’s board members are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. CSB investigations look into all aspects of chemical accidents, including physical causes such as equipment failure as well as inadequacies in regulations, industry standards, and safety management systems.
The Board does not issue citations or fines but does make safety recommendations to plants, industry organizations, labor groups, and regulatory agencies such as OSHA and EPA. Visit our website, www.csb.gov. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do you have a passion for Ammonia Process Safety Management? Do you feel you have more to offer the Ammonia PSM community than you can at your current position?
GCAP is looking to expand our compliance team through the addition to our staff of an additional full time traveling instructor. You’ll travel all over the United States and work with the best customers in the business. From grocery store warehouses to synthetic rubber plants and food processors, if they use ammonia in a PSM/RMP covered process, you’ll visit them eventually. You’ll be part of a team assisting PSM practitioners as they perform Process Hazard Analysis Studies, Compliance Audits and even OSHA/EPA citation abatements.
You may well travel 80% of the time. You’ll work long days and nights. While GCAP offers a steady income, it will give you the chance to be part of the best team in the industry and get out from behind a desk. But if you’re willing to get out from behind the desk – if you’re willing to commit to helping our industry by becoming a traveling member of the GCAP staff, we can promise you something more: Satisfaction. A chance for promotion and becoming lead in GCAP’s other division courses as well!
- The satisfaction you get when you help people struggling with PSM finally understand it.
- The satisfaction you get when you assist people in getting their OSHA/EPA problems behind them so they can get back to their core business.
- The satisfaction you get when you realize you’ve made a difference in hundreds of companies across this great country.
- GCAP provides the training. GCAP provides the travel and accommodations. You provide the passion!
Contact us and send resume to:
Subject: PSM Position
Garden City Ammonia Program
Garden City Ammonia Program is proud to announce they will be in Phoenix, AZ in January 2015 to host an Ammonia Operator I Seminar.
This will be a 4 day intensive Industrial Ammonia Refrigeration Course. Seating is limited so make preparations today. Course dates are January 26 – 29, 2015
This is one of the best videos I have ever seen of following the gas through the female screw of a twin screw machine. Remember all twin screws must split rotors apart towards the suction port.
BITZER Screw Compressor
In today’s PodCast Jeremy Williams interview Andre Patenaude whom is the Director of CO2 Business Development through Emerson Climate Technologies. Today we discused topics that are becoming more and more relevant to commercial refrigeration (Natural Refrigerants).
Donated cut-aways to GCAP from Emerson Climate Technologies
This podcast includes discussion of the proposed early phase outs of R-134a and some similar refrigerants by January 2016.
Emerson CO2 compressors for sub-critical application and transcritical applications.
Getting Back to Basics for technicians
University of Dayton Ohio “Global Innovation Center”
Mobile training simulators for CO2 applications
A scary video of an ammonia release and what looks like a hose rupture. Thank goodness the spectators did not try to approach the scene and should of been further away.
Anhydrous Ammonia Tank Leak
The Process Safety division of GCAP continues their 2014 tour in Georgia this week. So far this year, we’ve brought our world class PSM/RMP classes, SOP building seminars, Compliance Audits and PHA study groups to:
It’s great to be out in the field working with the leaders in the Food Production and Cold Storage industries, but being on the road this often means we aren’t available in the office and have to work on new and innovative ways of keeping in touch with our customers.
Those of you who have attended the PSM/RMP class know that one of the best parts of the class is the CD that comes with the book. On the CD there are over 6,000 pages of reference material and templates for Guidelines, SOPs, Forms, etc. The PSM program on the CD can be used as a template to create your own PSM/RMP program. Several Food Manufacturing and Cold Storage companies have done just that and we use their feedback to continuously improve the program on the CD.
Unfortunately, that means that the CD is out of date just about the minute it is printed! We’re not kidding – we’ve made more than 300 changes to the PSM companion CD in the last three years and all of them made the example program just a little bit better. The question we’ve been struggling with is: How do we make sure these changes are made available to our former, current and future students?
Our solution was to set up a virtual CD on a shared Google Drive where students that had already taken the class can always have access over the Internet to the latest, most up-to-date version of the PSM companion CD. This service is totally free to all the students who have taken the PSM class in the last three years. All you have to do is contact the office and let them know a current email address so we can send you an invite to the Google Drive.
Once you receive your invite through email, just click on the link and login to your Google account to gain access to the files on the CD. You’ll notice an additional file in the Root Directory of the CD called “Update History.” For the past few months (and going forward) that’s where we’ve recorded the major changes we’ve made to the PSM companion CD.
Remember: If you’ve taken GCAP’s PSM/RMP or NEP class in the last three years, your access is totally free. If you have not had the opportunity to attend one of these great classes, check out our website on when we are holding them – either at our home base in Garden City, KS or at an on-site class during the remainder of our 2014 tour!
Do you have the need for a compliance audit, PHA study, SOP building seminar, or are you interested in hosting one of our PSM/RMP classes? The wonderful office staff can help you decide if our services are the right fit for your situation. Don’t hesitate to email email@example.com or call them today at 620-271-0037
I was recently interviewed by Doug Bonderud of GoodWay of Just Venting Blog Website. After over five years of publishing the Just Venting blog they noticed the topic “ammonia as a refrigerant” has been hugely popular year after year. So it stands to reason our first video podcast would revolve around this very topic.
Garden City Ammonia Program is proud to announce they will be in Anchorage, Alaska in October to host an Ammonia BootCamp Seminar.
This will be a 7 day intensive Ammonia Operator I & II combined. Seating is limited so make preparations today. Course dates are October 22-28, 2014
ATMOsphere America was June of 2014 -
This was the 3rd session and this year took place in San Francisco, CA.
It is a meeting place for industry experts to discuss natural refrigerant trends, the latest technologies and regulatory issues in North America! Taking place for the first time in San Francisco on June 18-19, 2014, this event targets around 250 decision makers including leading retailers, industrial end users, component and system suppliers, training institutes, associations and more.
Presentation topics will focus on regulation, standards and utilities, as well as on commercial and industrial refrigeration applications with input from key government representatives, end users (retailers, consumer brands, cold storage) as well as technology providers.
New features for the 2014 edition include more networking opportunities, optional site visits and several new technology case study sessions on heat pumps and HVAC.
Derek Hamilton of Star Refrigeration announce their move to manufactureing and contracting in the US for their specialized low charge ammonia systems.
GCAP believes this a great event as we see more and more traditionally built commercial refrigeration systems moving to natural refrigerants not only in America but across the world.
Click here to look at some of the presentations.